Craig Daniel on Fri, 21 Nov 2008 21:52:32 -0700 (MST)

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Re: [s-b] [Emergency] PEPs

On Fri, Nov 21, 2008 at 8:24 PM, Geoffrey Spear <wooble@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Point of order: after Rule 4E3 was amended on 10 December 2007, it
> became unclear who the Players of the game were, since the wording of
> 4E3 and 4E4 combine to make it impossible for an Outsider, not being
> an External Force, to become a player.  Thus the PEPs are:

As I read the distinction, an External Force can project into the
game, thus creating an Outsider. No External Force can directly
interact with the game, except through an Outsider. Ergo, it is
impossible for the external force known as "Craig Daniel" to submit
game actions.

But when said external force posts to the Public Forum in ways that
interact with the game, e is projecting emself into it. That
projection takes the form of a series of messages, and there is a
rules-defined game object which represents that projection; said game
object is an Outsider. One of two things is true:

The first option is that the rules work as we all think they do. The
Outsider and the External Force are actually the same thing, and the
one in question became a player by the name of teucer; that Outsider
is unambiguously a PEP. I actually think this scenario is highly

The second is that posts about what "I" do that were authored by Craig
Daniel (the External Force) rather than actually by the Outsider (who
Craig Daniel believes is named "teucer" and a player) were without
effect; the straightforward version of this says that to take an
action, he would have had to specify something along the lines of "My
in-game projection does the following:" - in which case nobody is
paranoid, since we all said "I become paranoid" rather than "my
in-game projection becomes paranoid," and so there is no emergency.
This affects *everyone*, by the way, since even if you as an External
Force were once a player you stopped being one once Players were
defined as being Outsiders which were not External Forces. In this
scenario one might argue that messages signed with player names were
done on behalf of the Outsiders, but in some cases those are the same
as the External Forces' names, which leads to confusion.

In case of choice two being correct: I intend for the Game Object
representing my projection into this game to become a player under the
name of teucer. That Game Object becomes Paranoid.

But there are also two variants on scenario number two; I find both
far more likely than scenario 2 in its pure form. In scenario 2a, only
Outsiders can act; their External Forces cannot act on their behalf.
In scenario 2b, because the projection takes the form of posts to the
PF (and the Wiki), those posts comprise the actions of the Outsider
formed therefrom anyhow - that is, the things the External Force says
it does, it doesn't succeed in doing, which is why Craig Daniel failed
to become a player upon posting his intent to do so, but his Outsider
mirrored this act and actually did it; the Outsider is now named
teucer and is a player, which makes it a PEP.

In Scenario 2b, everything works as it does in Scenario 1, except that
behind the scenes things are strange in a way that reminds me a bit of
JAGS Wonderland. (Great game, by the way; I recommend it to everyone.)
Craig Daniel the External Force claims to do things, and is completely
wrong; he doesn't - but teucer, who is his projection into the game
and an entirely different entity, *actually does* what he claimed he
had done.

Scenario 2a is like scenario 2, except without the workaround of
acting on behalf of your Outsider being allowed. Since Outsiders, not
External Forces, are PEPs, we all failed to become paranoid. Some of
us aren't reflected as PEPs at all, while the rest (including Wooble)
can't make those PEPs do anything, including become paranoid.

So, in scenario 1 I am a PEP, and a paranoid one. In Scenario 2b, the
same is true, for weird values of "I" and lots of sophistry about
what's going on Platonically. (Hell, *very* Platonically; there's even
a cave and shadow puppets involved.) Scenario 2, the pure version, has
the interesting feature that the list of PEPs is exactly as Wooble
claims except that I am now on it as the only one to be Paranoid. And
in Scenario 2a, which is the only one in which I am not a player, the
game is completely dead, as nobody can do anything and we can't start
an emergency to fix it.

One of these four scenarios is correct. (I think it's 2b.) But only
one. In each one, there is no ambiguity about the PEP list and the
emergency either works as normal or hasn't started anyhow. If you see
ambiguity in which scenario it is, though - a reasonable thing to
assert - then it's actually crystal clear who the PEPs are; they're
the Outsiders (*not* External Forces) who were playing when the
ambiguity arose. Ergo, in Scenario 1 the PEP list is as Wooble claims,
which does not include four paranoid PEPs, so no emergency exists and
the flag is in fact Jolly Roger. In Scenario 2 no PEPs are paranoid
(I'm the only paranoid entity in that scenario and am a player but,
given the ambiguity, not a PEP), so there is no emergency. In scenario
2b, the same list holds, and people are paranoid as we expect them to
be, same as in scenario 1; there is no emergency. And in scenario 2a,
that is the PEP list, but it doesn't matter because nobody can twiddle
their panic button and become paranoid.

In other words, thanks to the ambiguity there is no current emergency.
The emergency procedure rule thus does not apply and so my ambiguous
status as a player when it was thought to have begun is irrelevant.
Which means that we need to decide, outside of emergency protocols,
which scenario is true. The fact that the Consultation on Wooble's
playerhood is still outstanding, leaving him ambiguous having been not
playing right before the ambiguous reregistration is irrelevant; he's
a PEP thanks to an earlier ambiguity.

I intend, without objection, to activate the following Tweak: {This is
the version of the gamestate in which scenario 2b from the above
analysis is correct. /* Note: this is different from making it
correct, which would still be ambiguous depending on which other one
had been right before.*/}

Now for the fun part: *If* we are unambiguously in one of the four
scenarios, as we will be after the Tweak resolves (if it resolves;
Wooble, please don't be That Guy and object) then there is no
ambiguity anymore about who's a player. Suddenly, the Emergency
returns if we're in scenario 1 or 2b - and because the specific
scenario was always true, the emergency comes back with the Pause
having been initialized when J said it was. It's like a nomic version
of the two-slit experiment, and the Tweak collapses the waveform. Fun

 - teucer
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